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New Missouri State Senator Takes Over

As Brad Lager vacates the state senate, Dan Hegeman takes his place. You may contact him at the capitol by calling 573-751-1415. His email is [email protected] and the physical address is Room 332, State Capitol Building, Jefferson City, MO 65101.

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FSA Announces New Yield Data for Safety Net Calculations

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Val Dolcini offered farmers new information to update program payment yields that will help them better select protections offered by the Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs.

The new programs, established by the 2014 Farm Bill, are cornerstones of the commodity farm safety, offering farmers protection when market forces cause substantial drops in crop prices and

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Capital Report: Final Update …and Farewell

by State Sen. Brad Lager

In November of 1863, President Abraham Lincoln shared his belief that our nation’s democracy would not perish as long as we have a “government of the people, by the people, and for the people.” It has always been my belief that our founding fathers never intended for public service to be a career but instead our obligation and opportunity as citizens to serve our communities.

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Capital Report: Experiencing the Joys of Christmas

by State Sen. Brad Lager

In the spirit of the holiday season, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a healthy, happy, and Merry Christmas.

This year, Stephanie and I feel blessed as we experience the joys of Christmas through the eyes of our children (ages 7 and 3). Their enthusiasm and excitement is a great reminder that Christmas is a time to be

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Capital Report: The Need for Ethics Reform in Missouri

by State Sen. Brad Lager

There is an inherent trust that exists between the public and their elected officials. It sits at the cornerstone of our democratic process and is necessary to make our representative government function for the good of the people. Once the electorate believes that an official’s integrity has been compromised, whether it has or not, that cornerstone upon which our government is built begins to weaken.

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Capitol Perspectives: Deadly, Devious and Disabling Details

by Phill Brooks

In the weeks before the 2015 legislative session, two issues have emerged as dominant — Ferguson and government ethics. Yet, I wonder whether conflicts over details will be fatal.

For years, I’ve seen well-intentioned efforts by Missouri public officials crash on the shores of details. Think back to last year when legislative leaders expressed pride at pulling together a complex compromise on unaccredited school districts. There was

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PSC Cold Weather Rule Takes Effect

The Missouri Public Service Commission’s Cold Weather Rule, designed to help customers with heat-related utility bills, began on Nov. 1. The rule will remain in effect through March 31, 2015. The Cold Weather Rule has been a part of the commission’s rules and regulations since 1977.

The Cold Weather Rule applies to natural gas and electric utilities under PSC jurisdiction that provide heat-related service. Municipally operated systems, cooperatives and those

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Look Up, Americans

It’s not as bad as you think

by Lee H. Hamilton

We are one glum country.

Trust in the federal government is at historic lows, according to Gallup. More than half of the respondents to an October Rasmussen poll think our best days are behind us. And just a few weeks ago, an NBC/Wall St. Journal poll found that the one thing Americans agree upon whatever their race or circumstances

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New Toll for I-70?

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has asked the transportation commission to study the possibility of adding tolls to Interstate 70, and requested they present the results by the end of the month. Officials say the interstate could be widened to three lanes in each direction from St. Louis to Kansas City. In August, voters decided against a sales tax that would have funded several projects, including the I-70 widening project. There

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